OHA presents awards to outstanding leaders; hosts Annual Meeting

Posted on: 11/8/17

Darin Ferrell (center) receives the Cleveland Rodgers Distinguished Service Award from Jimmy Leopard (right), OHA board chairman, and Craig Jones (left), OHA president.
Health care professionals from throughout the state attended the OHA’s 98th Annual Convention & Trade Show, held Nov. 1-3, at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City. In addition to the educational sessions and annual trade show, other convention highlights included the presentation of several awards to Oklahoma’s outstanding health care leaders.

During the convention, Darin Farrell, received the Association’s highest award, the W. Cleveland Rodgers Distinguished Service Award, in recognition of his outstanding service to the health care industry.

Farrell was recently named vice president of operations at Mercy Hospital Ardmore. He was administrator at Arbuckle Memorial Hospital in Sulphur for the past 13 years. Early during his time in Sulphur, he successfully converted the facility to a Critical Access Hospital and led a campaign to pass a permanent sales tax to support the hospital and to provide stable funding to build a much needed new facility. He oversaw the design and construction of the new hospital, which opened in 2009.

While at Arbuckle Memorial Hospital, Farrell received several awards, including Murray County Leader of the Year, Sulphur Citizen of the Year, and Oklahoma Rural Health Association Rural Administrator of the Year.

Farrell began his career in health care at Memorial Hospital of Southern Oklahoma (now Mercy Ardmore) in 1992 working as a transporter, nurse aide, and unit secretary. As an LPN, he worked at the hospital and in home health. After he graduated from the OU College of Nursing in 1996, he worked as an RN in the ICU and surgery holding. Upon obtaining his master’s degree from East Central University in 2002, Farrell became manager of nursing support services at Mercy Ardmore.

Leopard (right) and Jones (Left) present the Advocacy in Action Award to Jay R. Johnson (center).
Farrell has served on the OHA board as southeast region chair since 2010. He has also served on the OHA Council on Finance and has served as chair of the OHA Council on Rural Health.

The OHA’s Advocacy in Action Award was presented to Jay R. Johnson, FACHE. Johnson has served as president and chief executive officer, Duncan Regional Hospital, since August 2010. He began his career at Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas. He later was the vice president of ancillary services and then chief operating officer at Stillwater Medical Center. In 2005, Johnson was selected as the senior vice president and chief operating officer at Mercy Memorial Health Center in Ardmore.

Johnson has been a member of the OHA board of trustees since 2013 and is a delegate for the American Hospital Association Region 7 policy board. He has served on the OHA Council on Policy and Legislation since 2008 and has been very involved in the advocacy efforts of the OHA, working to advance important initiatives to strengthen the provision of health care in Oklahoma. He has frequently made phone calls and visits to the state Capitol and to Washington, D.C., and has worked tirelessly to educate lawmakers on the vital needs of rural hospitals.

Johnson is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. He earned his Master of Health Administration in 1994 from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Va. He received his Bachelor of Business Administration in 1990 from Cameron University in Lawton.

The OHA Outstanding Achievement Award is presented to Rep. Leslie Osborn (center) by Leopard and Jones.
Rep. Leslie Osborn received the OHA Outstanding Achievement Award. In 2008, Osborn was elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives, District 47. She has chaired the revenue and taxation committee, appropriations sub-committee on natural resources, and was the first female in the House of Representatives to chair the judiciary committee. In December 2016, she was named as the first Republican female chairman of the House appropriations and budget committee.

Rep. Osborn has been a champion for hospitals, working to secure adequate budget allocations for health agencies and working toward future passage of a cigarette tax increase.

In her time at the state Legislature, Osborn has authored and passed landmark workers’ compensation reform that changed Oklahoma from an antiquated judicial system to an administrative system, saving businesses across the state an average of 30 percent in insurance costs since its passage; passage of Real ID implementation; and implementation of a pay-for-success program to move 100 women a year out of incarceration and into an intensive therapy and placement program called in Women in Recovery.

Allison Shelton Jech received the David J. Falcone Award, presented each year to a health administration student for outstanding achievement. The award was renamed in 1996 in honor of the late Dr. Falcone, who served from 1992-1996 as professor and chair of the Department of Health Administration and Policy for the University of Oklahoma College of Public Health.

Allison Shelton Jech received the David J. Falcone Award from Leopard.
Jech is a Masters in Health Administration candidate at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, College of Public Health, where she currently maintains a 4.0 GPA. She will graduate in May 2018. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Oklahoma.

Jech is a student member of the American College of Healthcare Executives. She is currently interning at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Oklahoma City, where she is conducting LEAN projects within the emergency department focusing on decreasing wait times and increasing access for veterans. She also coordinated and implemented the Nurse First program, phlebotomy, and the addition of X-ray within the ED. She previously worked as marketing director for Teal Creek Senior Living, Edmond, and has held positions at St. Anthony Hospital, Oklahoma City, and The Children’s Center, Bethany.

Jech is treasurer for the College of Public Health Student Association and holds an Institute for Healthcare Improvement Basic Certificate in Quality and Safety.

OHA Data Solutions 

Introducing a new initiative to improve the quality and timeliness of inpatient and outpatient encounter data available to hospitals in Oklahoma.

Learn More »